Tag Archives: pineapple recipes

FRIDAY FEAST with Jennifer Scoullar

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Greetings, food and book lovers, and welcome to another tasty edition of Friday Feast. This week we trip to the tantalising tropics and go a bit nutty with one of Australia’s favourite rural and environmental fiction authors. Plus there’s a giveaway!

But first, the disappointment that is Us Heins Weren’t Meant To Play Golf. Sigh. Deep, deep sigh. I was on form, dropping shots off my handicap with almost every round. But that was before, when the sun shone bright and autumn was far away. Now… Oh, it is ugly. So very, very ugly. The summer of my golfing content is over. The curse has returned with the shortening days and I am but a hacker once more.

Author Jennifer ScoullarEnough lamenting. It’s time for our guest.

Australian author Jennifer Scoullar blazed into our literary landscape with the best-selling rural romance Brumby’s Run, following that success up with Currawong Creek and Billabong Bend. What makes Jennifer’s novels different is their focus on environmental issues. Issues that are often complex and divisive, yet Jennifer handles with knowledge and empathy.

Her latest is Turtle Reef, which officially releases next week . Take a look…


TurtleReef_cover2.0From the bestselling author of Billabong Bend, Brumby’s Run and Currawong Creek comes a wonderful new novel set against the spectacular beauty of Queensland’s rocky coral coast.

Unlucky-in-love zoologist Zoe King has given up on men. Moving from Sydney to take up an exciting new role in marine science in the small sugar town of Kiawa is a welcome fresh start. Zoe  is immediately charmed by the region’s beauty – by its rivers and rainforests, and by its vast cane fields, sweeping from the foothills down to the rocky coral coast.  And also by its people – its farmers and fishermen, unhurried and down to earth, proud of their traditions.

Her work at the Reef Centre provides all the passion she needs and Zoe finds a friend in Bridget, the centre’s director. The last thing she wants is to fall for her boss’s fiancé, cane king Quinn Cooper, so she refuses to acknowledge the attraction between them – even to herself. But things aren’t quite adding up at the Reef Centre and when animals on the reef begin to sicken and die, Zoe’s personal and professional worlds collide. She faces a terrible choice. Will protecting the reef mean betraying the man she loves?

Ooh, this sounds exciting. Nothing like a story featuring a heroine stuck between a rock and a hard place. Definitely one for the buy list. Turtle Reef releases officially on Wednesday, March 25th but you can secure your copy right now.  Simply  pre-order from those good people at Booktopia, or try Bookworld, Angus & Robertson, Collins Booksellers, iBooks, Amazon.au, Google Play, Kobo, JB Hi-Fi, eBooks.com or your favourite bookstore.

All set? Then come swimming in delicious waters with Jennifer.

Turning Turtle

Many thanks for having me on ‘Friday Feast’ Cathryn, and for helping me celebrate the macadamia orchardupcoming release of my new book, Turtle Reef. The story is set at the southern tip of the Great Barrier Reef, where rainforests and cane fields sweep down from the foothills to meet the rocky, coral coast. Much more than sugar cane grows in these rich volcanic soils. Shady tropical orchards abound: avocados, custard apples, egg fruit, lychees, mangos – and of course macadamias, the king of nuts.

Macadamias aren’t really nuts at all, but the kernels of a hard, green fruit. I’m a bush tucker fan, and sometimes have trouble sourcing ingredients. But these are such popular international favourites, it’s easy to forget they’re indigenous.They macadamia fruitgrow on lovely rainforest trees that evolved not long after the death of the dinosaurs. For millions of years, they flourished along the east coast of Australia. However by the time Europeans discovered their commercial potential, they only persisted in a small number of rainforest remnants.

Today the macadamia tree is our only native commercial food crop. It can bear fruit for over 100 years. The oldest known tree was planted in 1858 at what is now Brisbane’s Botanical Gardens, and is still producing.

To celebrate the release of Turtle Reef, here is a simple macadamia recipe with a Queensland feel. I make this cake in a 30 cm cast iron skillet, however any oven-proof fry pan would do. An old-fashioned Aussie recipe, delicious but fattening!

Tropical Upside Down Cake

Tropical upside-down cake


½  cup butter

⅔ cup brown sugar

 1- 1 ½  cups unsalted roast macadamia nuts

Pineapple rings (fresh or canned)

1 cup plain flour

¾ cup sugar

1 ½ teaspoons baking powder

½ cup milk

1 egg

Pineapple juice or syrup


Melt ¼ cup butter in pan.

Add ⅔ cup brown sugar until melted. Use more butter & brown sugar if needed so that the bottom of the pan is covered with mixture. Once melted, remove from heat.

Arrange pineapple rings on top of melted brown sugar. Fill each with a macadamia nut. Chop remaining nuts and sprinkle in spaces, keeping some aside.

Sift 1 cup flour with ¾ cup of sugar and baking powder.

Add ¼ cup butter and ½ cup milk. Mix until well blended.

Add one egg and 2-3 tablespoons of pineapple juice or syrup. Mix well.

Pour batter over pineapple, spreading evenly to the edges. Sprinkle with remaining chopped nuts.

Bake 40-45 minutes or until golden.

Cool on rack for about 15 minutes. Place cake plate over pan, turn upside down and give a little shake. The cake should slide out easily.

For an indulgent tropical twist, serve warm, with Streets Blue Ribbon Coconut & Mango Ripple Ice Cream. Yum!


Doesn’t that sound divine? I was gone at the mention of caramel and macadamias. And don’t get me started on the sweet pineapple. Thanks for sharing this beautiful recipe, Jennifer. I’ll be testing this one out for sure.

Now, my luscious little Feasties, as you are probably already aware, Jennifer is not only an excellent writer but a generous soul. Which is why she’s offering a…


Yes, you could win your very own copy of Turtle Reef. Rah! But as always, you must work for it. Not very hard though. We’re about making life easy here on Friday Feast.

To be in the draw to win a copy of Turtle Reef, simply share which dish or food reminds you of the tropics.

Perhaps it’s a big bowl of juicy prawns with tangy seafood sauce, or a perfect fillet of reef fish with its skin grilled crispy. Maybe mangos or lychees or another exotic fruit like durian makes you think of sandy beaches and warm water. Or even a spicy green papaya salad and aromatic satays on the barbie. Reveal all and you’ll go into the draw.

For me it’s Morton Bay bugs. I love those babies and have them every time we head to north Queensland to visit Jim’s family. Served with bowls of nuoc cham for dipping, they go down a treat. A quick trip to the fish co-op and greengrocer, a bottle of something white and zesty to wash them down, and a feast is on.

So what brings out the tropics for you?

Giveaway closes midnight Tuesday, AEST, 24th March 2015. Australian postal addresses only.

If you’d like to learn more about Jennifer and her books, please visit her website. You can also connect via Facebook or Twitter using @JenScoullar.

This giveaway has now closed. Congratulations to Amanda B who has scored herself a copy of Turtle Reef. Lots of vicarious tropical living ahead for her. Thanks to everyone who joined in and shared their tropical delights. What fun!


FRIDAY FEAST with Christina Ashcroft

Well, Feasters, the Christmas season is well and truly on us. Melbourne’s halls are decked and the Myer Christmas window display in Bourke Street Mall is delighting small and big children alike with its tribute to Rob Scotton’s sheepy children’s book Russel’s Christmas Magic. So in the spirit of the season, let’s play with some angels. Some decidedly unsheepish ones!

Many of you may know Western Australian author Christina Ashcroft already from her alter ego Christina Phillip’s wonderful (and super hot) Roman Britain-set books Forbidden and Captive. These are fantastic stories, overflowing with passion and beautiful, lyrical writing. I am, as you can probably tell, a fan. She may have had a name change but I bet Christina’s writing and storytelling remains just as captivating in her new release, Archangel of Mercy.

Check it out!




Between an angel and a desperate woman comes salvation-

and a raw passion that challenges them at every turn…

When Aurora Robinson attempts to open a rift between dimensions to embrace her true heritage, an arrogant Archangel is the only one who can save her from the jaws of hell. And while she owes Gabriel her life, she’s determined not to fall at his feet-despite the desire she feels whenever they’re together.

After his wings were brutally destroyed millennia ago, Gabriel has no compassion for humans like those who ruined him and betrayed the ones he loved. But when he inexplicably finds himself defying ancient protocols to rescue a woman from a fate worse than death, he is shocked by the searing attraction he feels for a mortal.

As the ancient forces that seek to punish Aurora for her actions close in, Gabriel offers the tempting woman protection at his private sanctuary. But as they both succumb to their desires, they discover an even deeper connection-one that threatens to consume them.


Ooh, I cannot wait to read the drama awaiting Aurora in Gabriel’s private sanctuary. Methinks things are going to get sweaty!

Archangel of Mercy releases December 4th, 2012 but you can pre-order your copy now from The Book Depository, Barnes & Noble or Amazon. For more links, including an excerpt, please visit Christina’s website.

Now here’s Christina!


Archangel of Decadent Delight


Thank you Cathryn for inviting me back to your delicious Friday Feast to help celebrate the release of ARCHANGEL OF MERCY!

I wanted to share something completely mouth watering and seeing as it’s summer here in Oz (even though my internal clock insists it should be cold, dark and windy outside at this time of year!) what could be better than something chilly and gorgeous straight from the freezer?

Back in the Dark Ages, before the kids came along and I had the time and inclination to experiment in the kitchen, I used to work my way through all sorts of amazing sounding recipes. Not that they always turned out so well once I got my oven gloves on them (I will NEVER forget the duck a l’Orange I once tried to create in an effort to impress my new husband. The grease! You could have paddled in the stuff. I’ve never been able to try duck since!)

But I did find one yummy dessert that not only sounded great but also tasted divine. I was so excited at my Masterchef marvellousness that I made this dessert umpteen times (right up until the kids came along and we then proceeded to exist on a diet of fish fingers J )

It’s totally easy-peasy to make and in honour of my Archangel Gabriel just for today I’m going to call it…


Archangel of Decadent Delight


Ingredients (Makes anything from 2 to 4 servings, depending on how large your sundae glasses are!)

425g can of well drained pineapple pieces

4 tablespoons of rum or orange juice

300ml soft scoop vanilla ice cream

To Serve

150ml whipping cream

2 tablespoons desiccated coconut

4 maraschino cherries, drained

15g chocolate sprinkles

First of all you need to chop up half the pineapple. A good idea would be to buy a tin of already crushed pineapple (I’m going to do this next time!) Pop this in a bowl and sprinkle with half the rum or OJ.

Pour the rest of the rum over the remaining pineapple pieces, cover both bowls with cling film and then pop them in the fridge for an hour or so.

Once they are nicely chilled, drain the juice from the chopped pineapple and reserve the juice. Then quickly mix this mashed up pineapple into the ice cream with a fork. It’s good exercise!

Divide the mixture between your sundae glasses. They need at least 4-5 hours in the freezer or better still overnight.

To serve – whip the cream until soft and standing in peaks. Whisk in the coconut and the juice from the chopped pineapple. Take glasses from freezer. Add the rest of the pineapple pieces on top of the ice cream, including any juice. Then top each with coconut cream, a maraschino cherry and a little, or lot, of chocolate sprinkles. Serve at once and enjoy!

I usually use the rum, but tried it out with orange juice and it still tastes completely delicious. If, like me, you suffer a domestic disaster with the whipping cream then I can confirm that cheating and using Dream Whip totally works!

And here’s one I made earlier!


And now for the giveaway! I have an e-copy of my erotic futuristic fantasy TOUCH OF THE DEMON and some Archangel swag to giveaway to one lucky commenter. Just leave a comment or let me know who you’d love to share your favourite summer dessert with (extra brownie points if you let us know what your fave summer dessert is too!!!)


Wow, that dessert looks and sounds as luscious as your hero, Christina, and perfect for cooling off after reading one of your books.

So come on Feasters, take your eyes of that sexy cover and start revealing who you’d like to share your favourite dessert with. Seeing as I’ve now watched Thor about ten times, I’m going to put a little Santa wish in for a bare-chested Chris Hemsworth (in character, of course), hand feeding me crème brulee. Although I wouldn’t say no to Daniel Craig in his Cowboys and Aliens chaps either. There’s just something about a man in chaps…

Giveaway closes midnight, 4th December 2012 AEST. Open internationally. Rah!

You can keep up with what’s happening in Christina’s crazy writerly world over on  Facebook and Twitter. She loves to chat with readers and would love to see you over there! You can also sign up for Christina’s Newsletter via her website.